The U.S. Customs and Border Protection agency may be on the verge of building a new central processing center in El Paso.
According to reports, the facility would be built on a 59-acre site in northeast El Paso near Mesquite Hill Drive.
That site is currently owned by the City of El Paso and has a price tag of around $1.6 million.
CBP officials have for months anticipated the building of a new center in order to accommodate an ongoing rise in migrants crossing the border from Mexico into El Paso. Funds for the project were appropriated in fiscal 2019.
Sources say the new facility would be similar to the one operated by the CBP on Hondo Pass Drive, also on the northeast side of the city. That facility includes bed space, bathrooms, and offices, among other features.
What has been described as a “central processing center” would be geared to temporarily detain and process undocumented migrants. Earlier reports indicated that the facility would be capable of holding up to 1,000 detainees.
A public hearing on the proposed purchase is planned for December 7.
By Garry Boulard
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